Showing posts from May, 2012


You may remember her, wet-eyed and winsome, in Braveheart. Mel, kilted and blue in his role as William Wallace, enjoys a romantic interlude with her in between defeating the invading Sassenachs of Edward Longshanks. Sophie Marceau (20th Century Fox) In real life she would have had them both for breakfast. Isabella never met William Wallace, and she certainly never had his child because she was about nine years old when he died.  Like Sophie Marceau in the 1995 movie, she was beautiful, sophisticated and highly intelligent; but in character she was more like Mel’s Mad Max. In fact, she later become known as the She-Wolf. She was born in 1295 into the royal family of the most powerful kingdom in Europe. The youngest daughter of Phillip le Bel (the handsome) of France, she arrived in England when she was twelve to be married off to Longshank’s son, Edward II. Young Edward looked like a Plantagent king but he didn’t act like one; he preferred jigs to jousting

Elizabeth Murray, Lady Tollemache, Duchess Lauderdale

Elizabeth Murray, Duchess Lauderdale 1628-1698 Whilst searching for a strong female protagonist from the 17th Century on whom to base my novel, I discovered one practically on my own doorstep. I lived literally round the corner to Ham House, a stunning red brick Jacobean mansion on the River Thames, the home of Elizabeth Murray, Lady Dysart and Duchess of Lauderdale. Her second husband, John Maitland, Duke of Lauderdale, was one of the infamous CABAL of King Charles II, and between them, this couple turned Ham House into a palace fit for their king. Bishop Burnet, described by Elizabeth’s biographer, Doreen Cripps as ‘that spiteful old busybody’, left a sketch of her character coloured with his prejudice and personal malice. She was a woman of great beauty, but of far greater parts. She had a wonderful quickness of apprehension, and an amazing vivacity in conversation. She had studied not only divinity and history, but mathematics and philosophy. She was violent in every th

A Child Bride's Nightmare

In keeping with my theme on child brides, here is the story of one ten year old girl and her mother who managed to fight back. It is inspirational. Enjoy! I LOVE COMMENTS

Afghanistan Child Brides

The plight of Afghanistan women is heart-wrenching. The more we can share information and help the world know what is happening there, the more we can help bring Afghanistan women out of these ancient, horrific practices of abuse and death. I LOVE COMMENTS

Bride Kidnapping

As a historical fiction author, I enjoy the research part of writing. Often, I stumble upon the most fascinating, sometimes abhorrent information. This happened when I was researching bride kidnapping in 10th century Europe. I was shocked to discover that bride kidnapping and child brides are still practices in numerous countries today. The plight of women in many cultures is disturbing. Following is a two part video on bride kidnapping in Krgyzstan. I LOVE COMMENTS